Mr Canavan, who stood down from the Scottish Parliament in May, said: "My bill to make St Andrew's Day a national holiday received the unanimous approval of the Scottish Parliament with support from all parties, including the SNP."
A spokeswoman for the executive said Mr Salmond had spoken to Dennis Canavan, who was "very happy" with the reassurance given to him.
"This government has very ambitious plans to encourage the people of Scotland to celebrate St Andrew's Day and what it means to be Scottish - and we believe that having a holiday will support this approach," the spokeswoman said.
She added: "We are building on the holiday provisions in Dennis Canavan's bill to make the most of Scotland's national day and create a winter festival stretching from St Andrew's Day through Hogmanay to Burns Night." This year, Scottish Executive staff will be allowed a half-day off on 30 November - if they swap it for an existing break.
What is it that inspires this reluctance in Wales to declare March 1st, St David's Day, as a National Holiday? This day is a significant one for the nation and in any case Wales lags behind many other countries in the number of holidays it celebrates. Take Spain for example. The work ethic takes precedence over all, it appears. Let us have cause for celebration. We shall certainly reserve a holiday for the advent of Independence for Wales!